Highland Group Holdings is investing $100 million of equity in Symbion Energy’s planned $370 million methane gas power generation project on Lake Kivu in Rwanda. Additional terms of the transaction were not disclosed.
With an estimated 55 billion cubic meters of methane gas, it’s thought that the generation capacity of this naturally occurring resource in Lake Kivu could be exceed 500MW over a 40-year period. Today, only 25MW is being produced.
The capital allows Symbion to begin work in earnest on the project in November, starting with the rehabilitation and expansion of KP1, a plant the power developer acquired in 2016. The firm’s goal is to have KP1 generating between 8MW and 10MW by the middle of next year, part of an overall 22MW of power the firm plans to be generating by early 2019.
“This is perhaps the most interesting and exciting project that I have undertaken…,” said Irvine Laidlaw, Highland Group Holdings’ Chairman. “…Even more important, we are generating power for one of the fastest growing countries in Africa, so we’ll be making a major contribution to its continued growth. As with all my colleagues I am proud to be assisting Rwanda.”
The Lake Kivu power plant is the first African project backed by Highland Group Holdings whose assets are mainly invested in liquid instruments and renewable energy projects. These include the Deutsche Bucht and Veja Mate offshore wind energy projects in Germany.